Archive for the 'Santa Monica' Category

Tar & Roses Suppers: Wood-Fired Goat – Los Angeles (Santa Monica)

Tar & Roses - Santa Monica

The gift of goat is one that keeps on giving—just ask The Astronomer. In celebration of his 29th birthday this past June, I planned a wood-fired goat supper at Chef Andrew Kirschner‘s Tar & Roses in Santa Monica.

I’d previously dined here when the restaurant first opened and had a splendid time grazing over small plates. I was excited to be back, with three scientists in tow, to partake in this festive family-style dinner.

Goat Dinner at Tar & Roses - Santa Monica

Since we were celebrating something pretty special, our table shared a bottle of the Cascina Ca’ Rossa ($56), an Italian red made of Nebbiolo grapes. We thought it appropriate since the restaurant is named after the tasting notes characteristic of wines made from these grapes.

Goat Dinner at Tar & Roses - Santa Monica

Supper, which was priced at $44 per person, began with a very delicious charred gem lettuce salad with crispy pancetta, dried dates, and pungent blue cheese. There were smiles all around with this starter.

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Milo & Olive – Los Angeles (Santa Monica)

Milo & Olive - Santa Monica

Zoe Nathan and Josh Loeb didn’t intend to open a pizzeria when they scooped up the space at 2723 Wilshire Boulevard. The initial plan was to use the kitchen to relieve the overworked ovens at Huckleberry, their bustling bakery and cafe a mile away.

But one thing led to another, a pizza dough was developed and a wood-burning Mugnaini oven was installed, and thus, Milo & Olive came to be. Milo, by the way, is the name of the couple’s son. Olive, on the other hand, is just a name that they really liked.

Milo & Olive - Santa Monica

Milo & Olive’s stupendously good pastries, seasonal small plates, and delightful pizzas are reason enough to visit, but it took Chef Walter Manzke taking over the stoves to get me and my friends to finally come in. The former Church & State chef and soon-to-be chef-owner of République is temporarily overseeing the kitchen since executive chef Evan Funke departed.

The menu hasn’t changed much since his arrival and probably won’t for the most part. According to Chef, he’s mostly here to keep the kitchen organized and to make sure that the food is up to snuff.

Milo & Olive - Santa Monica

With only 24 seats in the restaurant and no reservations taken, our party of three faced a 45 minute wait when we arrived sometime past 7 on a weekday evening. After strolling up the street and grabbing drinks at The Charleston, we were seated at one of the communal tables.

To start, we shared a petite serving of marinated artichokes ($11) minimally adorned with baby spinach, toasted pine nuts, capers, golden raisins, and goat cheese.

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FIG Restaurant – Los Angeles (Santa Monica)

Fig - Santa Monica

VOSS, the fancy shmancy water company that serves its wares in sleek glass bottles, recently held a media dinner at FIG Restaurant in Santa Monica to get the word out about its 31 Days to Make a Difference campaign.*

Other than the fact that we were poured Voss water and were joined by representatives from the company, the focus this evening was squarely on Chef Raymond Garcia and the stellar food coming out of his kitchen. Subtlety is everything in situations like these.

Fig - Santa Monica

Chef Garcia’s menu is built around seasonal ingredients and simple preparations. Every plate this evening was inspired by and composed with what Chef found at the local farmers market.

Fig - Santa Monica

The first course, which was comprised of a gently poached Glaum Ranch hen’s egg with truffles and asparagus, gave us a glimpse of spring’s impending bounty.

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Tar & Roses – Los Angeles (Santa Monica)

Tar & Roses - Santa Monica

Tar & Roses has been humming and happening ever since it opened just under a month ago. Named after the tasting notes characteristic of wine made from Nebbiolo grapes, Tar & Roses serves up big and small plates in a lively neighborhood setting.

I came in for dinner last week with my friends and fellow food bloggers Darin and Esi. As guests of the restaurant, we were completely spoiled by chef and owner Andrew Kirschner—he sent out way too much food and we in turn ate more than our fill! It was a delightful evening, one that left me waddling out the front door with a smile on my face and doggie bags in hand.

Tar & Roses - Santa Monica

Prior to opening Tar & Roses, Chef Kirschner spent the last decade honing his craft at Joe’s in Venice, Chadwick in Beverly Hills, Table 8 in West Hollywood, and Wilshire in Santa Monica. He was named “Best New Chef in 2008” by Angeleno magazine.

Tar & Roses - Santa Monica

Chef Kirschner’s “modern and rustic” menu is divided into four sections: Snacks, Small, Veggies, and Large. There’s nothing I love more than grazing over half a dozen plates rather than sticking to a single main course. The menu here is just my speed.

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